Question Trying to set up a wired home network

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So why do you want a second router in the first place.

Most people do that to try to improve the wifi in a remote room but you say you don't care about wifi.

If it is just to get more ports then buy a cheap 5 or 8 port 10/100/1000 switch for under $20.

In fact that is what I would still recommend even if you want wifi. You would plug the switch into the cable going to the main router. You could then plug your other pc into the switch. You could then use your 10/100 router only for wifi by plugging it into the switch also.
Note you really want to run the second router as a AP, but if you just want ethernet ports you can use just the switch.
 
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Ok, so this is what I am getting from your question:
-You want to work from home over video calls. You solved the problem yourself by using a wired connection which is almost a must for any streaming or video calling applications.

-You are wondering if your LAN speeds exceed your WAN speed. Typically, yes your LAN speed is faster than WAN unless you are running Fibre or SFP networking at your home, and have a fast package with your ISP. You stated that you were unhappy with your 635 Megabit LAN speed. This is most likely not a network issue. It is possible your HDD's bandwidth speed bottleneck. If you have an SSD on the upload end and an SSD on the downloading end, I could almost guarantee that your speeds would be higher. On my network, I have a NETGEAR 24-port switch, which came from my place of employment. I get the full 1000 Mbps only because I have an HP Proliant rackmount server that has 4x 500GB SAS drives running in RAID 0 which hosts all my files. If I do transfers from some of my crappier computers, speeds don't reach 1000.

- For what your end goal is here, you really want an Ethernet Network Switch. I recommend something like the NETGEAR 5-Port Gigabit Ethernet Unmanaged Switch. I have the 24-Port version of this for my home network, it has served me well for quite some time. It ran in a high-demand business setting for about 5 years prior to this, so it is definitely reliable.
 

robert600

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So why do you want a second router in the first place.

Most people do that to try to improve the wifi in a remote room but you say you don't care about wifi.

If it is just to get more ports then buy a cheap 5 or 8 port 10/100/1000 switch for under $20.

In fact that is what I would still recommend even if you want wifi. You would plug the switch into the cable going to the main router. You could then plug your other pc into the switch. You could then use your 10/100 router only for wifi by plugging it into the switch also.
Note you really want to run the second router as a AP, but if you just want ethernet ports you can use just the switch.
TY for the reply. Sorry if my original ramblings weren't clear. I do want the 2nd routers wifi. When I said I didn't care about the wifi ... I meant ... I don't want the 2 routers exchanging information by reading each others wifi ... this is what they do if you use bridging ... is it not? I want them communicating using the wired connector so that I get the high speed file transfer between a computer connected to the primary router and another connected to the secondary router. I simply don't know how to explain what I want any better.

I think I understand about the switch thing and yes, it may very well come to that. Remember, I'm taking baby steps here ... so ... having 3 available wired ports on each of the 2 routers will give me lots to fiddle about with in the meantime.

The router support article I linked to ... made no mention of AP (access point maybe?) so I don't know what to say about that.
 

robert600

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Ok, so this is what I am getting from your question:
-You want to work from home over video calls. You solved the problem yourself by using a wired connection which is almost a must for any streaming or video calling applications.

-You are wondering if your LAN speeds exceed your WAN speed. Typically, yes your LAN speed is faster than WAN unless you are running Fibre or SFP networking at your home, and have a fast package with your ISP. You stated that you were unhappy with your 635 Megabit LAN speed. This is most likely not a network issue. It is possible your HDD's bandwidth speed bottleneck. If you have an SSD on the upload end and an SSD on the downloading end, I could almost guarantee that your speeds would be higher. On my network, I have a NETGEAR 24-port switch, which came from my place of employment. I get the full 1000 Mbps only because I have an HP Proliant rackmount server that has 4x 500GB SAS drives running in RAID 0 which hosts all my files. If I do transfers from some of my crappier computers, speeds don't reach 1000.

- For what your end goal is here, you really want an Ethernet Network Switch. I recommend something like the NETGEAR 5-Port Gigabit Ethernet Unmanaged Switch. I have the 24-Port version of this for my home network, it has served me well for quite some time. It ran in a high-demand business setting for about 5 years prior to this, so it is definitely reliable.
TY for the reply.
Yes ... my work ...TEAMS etc. problems are a thing of the past ... wired LAN saved the day!

No, I'm not wondering if my wired LAN speeds exceed my WAN speed. It's very clear they do .... by a very wide margin. I think I stated that I was very happy with my 635 wired LAN speed just that it wasn't the 1 G speed that would be optimal. When we were fooling about with this in a different thread . I tried SSD to SSD and got virtually the same speeds. I think you hit the nail on the head when said 'crappier computers ... lower speeds'. My laptops definitely live in the crappier box.

I hear what you say about switches and it may come to that. Right now however, I want to see if I can get this secondary router to do what I want it to. At the very least, I'll learn a bunch of stuff.
 
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Ok it seems that you do want the second router's WiFi. I actually just posted a thread with a similar question as you. If I connect my router to LAN instead of WAN, I am wondering if it will still work properly as it did when connected to WAN and still give my wifi connected devices access to my wired devices and vice versa. I am going to be trying this out myself very soon on my home network so stay posted I'll let you know how it goes.
 

robert600

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Ok … I didn’t get any direct help about setting up the new secondary router so I went ahead and configured it the way I thought would be best … what Linksys calls a ‘Cascade wired LAN to wired LAN router to router connection. Since it had the same IP address as the primary, I had to change the last number from 1 to 2 in that funny string of numbers that gives you the address (Linksys refers to that number after the last . as the fourth octet. So now I can boast to my friends … it’s easy to change the IP address of a router … just change the number in the 4th octet. No one will have a clue what I’m talking about but … it’ll sure sound impressive. Anyway, also disabled the DHCP server (without understanding why … just blindly following the article. Went into the wifi settings … changed the name of the (I forget what they call it … SSID? … the name you get on your devices when you look for available networks) and changed the password to something I'd have a chance of remembering. There were 2 of each of these actually … 1 for the 2.4 G signal and another for the 5 G signal. I used the same password for both. Disconnected it from my computer … removed the old secondary router … connected the new secondary to the primary … turned it on … gave it a minute to sort itself out and ran some some tests.

The main thing I was concerned about was file transfer speed between a laptop wire connected to the primary and a laptop wire connected to the secondary. Hooked the laptops up that way, copied a 10G file over and had a peek at things using Task Manager … Performance. Transfer speed jiggled about between 620 and 580 … my best guess at average speed was I reckon … 595 or thereabouts. A little less than the 665 I was getting when both are connected to the primary but not too bad … good enough for the crowd I run with … as they say. Accordingly, I’m calling this a success!! If it can be tuned up a little … great … if not … no worries.

I then grabbed my tablet … found the 2 new network names, connected to each of them (I actually remembered the password!) and tested each of signals by walking around the house playing on-line poker. I lost a few chips but … both signals worked very well! So … I’m calling that a success as well!

Very, very pleased about all this. I’m ready now to move on to the next step which for me will be planning out the best way to run wires to all the spots in the house where I want wired LAN and the secondary router etc. A few people have kinda ‘jumped the gun’ a little on me here with recommendations about switches etc. This next step is where I figure all that will come into the mix. Sorry if I’ve been taking ‘baby steps’ but understanding so little about all this … the only way I can manage it is one little bit at a time. I’m trying to understand why I’m doing what I’m doing rather than just blindly following guided instructions. Anyway … to me, having this secondary router functioning the way I want is a big deal out of the way … it’s been disturbing my WAH!

I’ll write a post tomorrow about my thoughts on the actual final wiring details … once wires are run through walls floors, ceilings etc. I’ll be stuck with it … so I’d like to do it in the best way possible.
 
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robert600

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Ok it seems that you do want the second router's WiFi. I actually just posted a thread with a similar question as you. If I connect my router to LAN instead of WAN, I am wondering if it will still work properly as it did when connected to WAN and still give my wifi connected devices access to my wired devices and vice versa. I am going to be trying this out myself very soon on my home network so stay posted I'll let you know how it goes.
When you say "If I connect my router to LAN instead of WAN" ........ is my router referring to a secondary router or are you talking about a single, main router?
 

robert600

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I could use some advice in regards to the layout and the physically installing of a wired LAN system. One concept that’ll be a major factor in this is what I’ll refer to as the ‘Wife Factor’: very simply … none of the Ethernet wire can be visible (except of course at the very end of each cable where I can have a foot or 2 of wire poking out of the wall ready to be attached to a device).

Ok … where I’m at now … I’m in a 2 story ranch type style house. Ethernet wise … everything is currently in the basement … in what I’ll refer to as my ‘man cave’. By previous agreement … very happy to say that the wife factor does not apply here. An exception to this is I do have 1 ethernet cable running upstairs to service what I’m using as an office. Recent covid events have forced me into on-line teaching using TEAMS etc. and wifi was not able to keep up … that’s what started this whole little project … anyway since this wire allows me to have an income I’ve been granted limited-time immunity (till the end of the school year) from the ‘wife factor … for this one wire only.

In the cave … I have a primary router connected to a secondary router (very recently configured to behave just the way I want). This gives me 6 wired LAN ports … one of these is servicing the office upstairs … so 5 free to play with. I can connect laptops, uhd blueray players etc. to any of these ports and get pretty decent file transfer rates (600 Mbps or so). So … now I can go ahead and set up a PLEX server based movie etc. system (earlier attempts via wifi failed miserably at this) … something I’ve been thinking about for a while now … so that’s great!

The plan of course is to extend the wired LAN to the 2nd floor. Here the wife factor comes very much into play and should under no circumstances be underestimated lol. And here is where I could use some advice. It’s only been in the last week or so that I’ve any experience or knowledge about routers, networking etc. so if some of my terms or thinking are muddled or whatever … cut me a bit of slack but definitely point out to me where I’m wrong.

Ok on the planning layout end of 2nd floor extending … I see 2 ways of proceeding:

1/ kind of a ‘brute force’ approach … simply attach an 8 or 12 port switch to the primary router and run separate wires to every devise location. This is ok but … it means running about 7 or 8 wires from the cave up to the 2nd floor … because of where there is a good place to accomplish that (utility, furnace room with no ceiling) means running these wires about I/2 the length of the house in the basement … feathering the wires up to the 2nd floor and then running back through various lengths of the house (some would have to come back the entire length of the house). Doable for sure (and I do have a big ass spool of wire to play with) but kinda … clunky.

2/ use a switch in the cave but just take 1 wire from it (or from the primary router) … run it same way mentioned above and … at the 2nd floor level … attach it to a 2nd switch (there is a quite centrally located closet that would be a good location for this switch and … since it’s my closet would be one the very few spots immune to the ‘wife factor’. All second floor devices (including the 2nd router?) could be connected to this switch with relatively short lengths of cable. I’m not sure though … would introducing this switch to switch connection have an adverse effect on file transfer speed?

Any thoughts on these 2 methods would be much appreciated. Or … there may an entirely other, better way to layout everything?

Ok … thinking of the runs of wire:

As mentioned … no ‘wife factor’ worries in the cave … I want it neat and tidy and out of the way of course but invisible … I’m not too worried about that. I see no problems with the cave cables. The 2nd floor cables however are very much subject to the ‘wife factor’ … that’s her domain and she guards it ruthlessly. I do however have an excellent ‘window of opportunity’ approaching. In the late spring, my wife wants to some remodeling, redecorating, painting etc. and one of the things she wants (music to my ears) is … those wall to ceiling corner crown moldings. They don’t actually go right into the corner … glue or nail one edge to the wall … the other edge to the ceiling and you have a nice little cavity at the wall/ceiling corner for the Ethernet cable … up above all the door frames … perfect I reckon. All the interior walls are standard 2X4 with ½ inch drywall on each side. To get through a wall to another room at that height would mean drilling through the top plate …so 3 ½ of wood … a speed bore bit or something would handle that ok … right? Since I’m running cable only (no connector) … ¼ or 5/16 inch would probably be plenty?

Another few things I can’t quite figure is … ok, I’ve got my cable at the right spot at the top of the wall. Now I want to come down into the hollow cavity of the wall to the right vertical height. How would I get a hole from the side of the top plate down into the wall cavity … I mean a drill wouldn’t work because you couldn’t get the right angle on it without hitting the ceiling with the back of the drill? Even banging away with a chisel would be problematic. Can anyone give me a suggestion here? I’d like to avoid damaging the drywall below where the crown molding would cover if possible. Also … thinking of the wall where the cable is at the right height to be plugged to devices … there seem to be wall plates with female sockets built into them … there’s also wall plates with a little round hole in them for the wire to come through … then you crimp a standard connector on the wire … which of those methods would be best? I guess … thinking of the ‘wife factor’ the wall plates with the built in female connectors would be the tidiest.
 
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So the router is on the basement but your computer is upstairs, or do you have 2 computers?

I've used the female jack outlets yesterday and it's super easy to set them up, you just need to peel the cable a little and then close a lid that'll keep each wire in place:
https://www.amazon.com/Cat5e-Keystone-Beige-Toolless-Female/dp/B000I97LZU
You don't need any tools except for a wire cutter or scissors

Can't you route a cable through the walls? I mean on the inside.
 

robert600

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So the router is on the basement but your computer is upstairs, or do you have 2 computers?
I have 5 (only laptops). Currently, 4 are in the basement, 1 is in the upstairs in my 'office'. Being laptops however ... they tend to move around. I also service/update/repair a bunch for friends and family. My wife also has 1 ... it's always upstairs.

I've used the female jack outlets yesterday and it's super easy to set them up, you just need to peel the cable a little and then close a lid that'll keep each wire in place:
https://www.amazon.com/Cat5e-Keystone-Beige-Toolless-Female/dp/B000I97LZU
You don't need any tools except for a wire cutter or scissors
Ok!!! That's very good to know! Thanks.

Can't you route a cable through the walls? I mean on the inside.
I'm not sure what you're asking me here. Do you mean inside the wall, down the length of the wall? If so, there's a 2 x 4 stud every 16" ... how would I get past them (bearing in mind there's drywall on each side of the wall)?
 
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You most likely want only one DHCP server on your LAN that's why you need to turn the second one off. If using only the LAN side of a router you can use it as a switch (some "routers" have an AP setting where you use the WAN port to connect it to the rest of the LAN maybe disabling the LAN ports or bridging WAN and LAN ports together). The speed of the network/filesharing can also depend on the machines used (CPU, network card/chips and drivers and such matter too) and the drives speeds in both machines like the other guy wrote, SSD:s are usually faster than spinning drives. Wired ethernet (gigabit) is usually much faster than WiFi. Maybe look into using DD-WRT firmware in your older router/AP (if compatible) to among other things be able to use the same SSID name for both 5 and 2,4 GHz network radios and then find out how to make your machine roam faster/more easily between the 5 and 2,4 GHz channels your APs is using based on best signal strength availability, especially if moving your machine about in the house between the APs. Get the free version of Netspot or similar software to find out what the situation is, what channels are used and their signal strength and maybe eliminate unnecessary wifi sources/senders like hotspot/internetsharing devices and wifi direct stuff that clutter and maybe makes it harder for APs to find free channels if they are set to auto channel mode. Avoid channel overlapping between APs and maybe restrict 2,4 GHz to use only 20MHz bandwidth reducing how many channels is used by each AP. This can also be a good idéa for 5GHz if there are plenty of neighbors WiFi networks/channels "leaking" into your house or the other way around. 5GHz radios can switch channel and move to channel 36 if they detect radar signals on the previous channel used. I've seen this happen and it can disrupt WiFi connections. Maybe the auto channel selection mode can be difficult if all APs that are close to each other have difficulty finding non "occupied" channels or at least channels with less signal strength that it can start using? If this happen often/all close APs do it frequently and at more or less the same time what will happen?
 

robert600

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I've used the female jack outlets yesterday and it's super easy to set them up, you just need to peel the cable a little and then close a lid that'll keep each wire in place:
https://www.amazon.com/Cat5e-Keystone-Beige-Toolless-Female/dp/B000I97LZU
You don't need any tools except for a wire cutter or scissors
Just had a look at what you linked ... there's no wall plate or anything for mounting to the wall? I was thinking more like this:
https://www.amazon.com/Port-Ethernet-Wall-Plate-ESYLink/dp/B072J2RS43/ref=sr_1_3?crid=378YKQME3XWHK&dchild=1&keywords=wall+plate+for+ethernet+cable&qid=1611868364&sprefix=wall+plate+for+ethernet,aps,181&sr=8-3
 

robert600

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You most likely want only one DHCP server on your LAN that's why you need to turn the second one off. If using only the LAN side of a router you can use it as a switch (some "routers" have an AP setting where you use the WAN port to connect it to the rest of the LAN maybe disabling the LAN ports or bridging WAN and LAN ports together). The speed of the network/filesharing can also depend on the machines used (CPU, network card/chips and drivers and such matter too) and the drives speeds in both machines like the other guy wrote, SSD:s are usually faster than spinning drives. Wired ethernet (gigabit) is usually much faster than WiFi. Maybe look into using DD-WRT firmware in your older router/AP (if compatible) to among other things be able to use the same SSID name for both 5 and 2,4 GHz network radios and then find out how to make your machine roam faster/more easily between the 5 and 2,4 GHz channels your APs is using based on best signal strength availability, especially if moving your machine about in the house between the APs. Get the free version of Netspot or similar software to find out what the situation is, what channels are used and their signal strength and maybe eliminate unnecessary wifi sources/senders like hotspot/internetsharing devices and wifi direct stuff that clutter and maybe makes it harder for APs to find free channels if they are set to auto channel mode. Avoid channel overlapping between APs and maybe restrict 2,4 GHz to use only 20MHz bandwidth reducing how many channels is used by each AP. This can also be a good idéa for 5GHz if there are plenty of neighbors WiFi networks/channels "leaking" into your house or the other way around. 5GHz radios can switch channel and move to channel 36 if they detect radar signals on the previous channel used. I've seen this happen and it can disrupt WiFi connections. Maybe the auto channel selection mode can be difficult if all APs that are close to each other have difficulty finding non "occupied" channels or at least channels with less signal strength that it can start using? If this happen often/all close APs do it frequently and at more or less the same time what will happen?
Ok ... thanks so much for all that info. There's a lot packed in there for me to digest. I'm particulary interested in the "among other things be able to use the same SSID name for both 5 and 2,4 GHz network radios and then find out how to make your machine roam faster/more easily between the 5 and 2,4 GHz channels your APs is using based on best signal strength availability, especially if moving your machine about in the house between the APs".
The way I have things now of course ... I have to manually change between which routers signal my ... (say tablet) is using and ... which channel of that router to use (if I'm understanding correctly). That has some advantages .. but a bit of a hassle when moving about from place to place in the house. This will be more important of course once the secondary router is installed in it's final destination. Overall, some sort of automatic switching over (based on signal strength would be better for sure.

A quick couple of questions if I may ... you seem very well versed in this stuff.

I read somewhere??? ... Having 2 routers side by side is not good because the signal from one can interfer with the signal from the other. Right now ... mine are ... inches apart ... now for a while I want them in the same room ... is there like a good 'rule of thumb' minimum distance that they should be separated by to eliminate interference. I should say, I haven't actually noticed any interferance at all with the way things are now.

I'm thinking when the secondary router finallly gets moved to it's permanent location ... I'm probably going to need to use a directional antenna. Have you had success with them?... I don't have to go too far but probably a bit out of the range of it's default antenna. I can't really test this until it's set up where it's going.
 
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Oh yeah, I just bought the connector and plate separately as I did it on a local store rather than via amazon (there's no amazon in my country) it was merely an example.
The difference is that I already had cable to work with and used no connectors on the inside, this forum has helped me a lot ^^

I have 5 (only laptops). Currently, 4 are in the basement, 1 is in the upstairs in my 'office'. Being laptops however ... they tend to move around. I also service/update/repair a bunch for friends and family. My wife also has 1 ... it's always upstairs.



Ok!!! That's very good to know! Thanks.



I'm not sure what you're asking me here. Do you mean inside the wall, down the length of the wall? If so, there's a 2 x 4 stud every 16" ... how would I get past them (bearing in mind there's drywall on each side of the wall)?
This I really don't know since it depends on how your house was built, mine and pretty much all I know have plastic or metal conduits going through the walls and you run cables through those.
 

robert600

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This I really don't know since it depends on how your house was built, mine and pretty much all I know have plastic or metal conduits going through the walls and you run cables through those.
That's a sensible arrangement. Over here, you see that kind of thing in commercial buildings ... but every day, 'run of the mill' residential houses don't have anything like that ... even vertically between floors so if you want to run wires, new water pipes or whatever ... you're looking at lots of drilling! Maybe mansions or whatever have some provisions for that but normal houses .... no.
 
So now I can boast to my friends … it’s easy to change the IP address of a router … just change the number in the 4th octet. No one will have a clue what I’m talking about but … it’ll sure sound impressive. Anyway, also disabled the DHCP server (without understanding why … just blindly following the article. Went into the wifi settings … changed the name of the (I forget what they call it … SSID? … the name you get on your devices when you look for available networks) and changed the password to something I'd have a chance of remembering. There were 2 of each of these actually … 1 for the 2.4 G signal and another for the 5 G signal. I used the same password for both. Disconnected it from my computer … removed the old secondary router … connected the new secondary to the primary … turned it on … gave it a minute to sort itself out and ran some some tests.

I’m trying to understand why I’m doing what I’m doing rather than just blindly following guided instructions.
Glad you're trying to understand--that's how I started and I can do what you want in my sleep now after 30 years of this stuff. :D

So to understand IP addresses at a professional level, read this--it's literally what I had to learn in college:
https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/support/docs/ip/routing-information-protocol-rip/13788-3.html
Same thing, different approach to the subject (as a teacher you know how this sometimes helps):
https://computer.howstuffworks.com/internet/basics/what-is-an-ip-address.htm

The reason you changed the IP address is simple--can't have 2x same IP addresses on one network. For fun, you can have 2x same ones and see the resulting chaos. :)

Same reason for disabling the DHCP server--can't have 2x on the same network. Again, for fun, you can set up 2x and see the resulting chaos.

The wifi name is technically called the SSID and having the same SSID with the same password allows devices to move from one wifi to another by just reconnecting to what they think is the same access point. This is why it is also useful to have the same SSID on 2.4Mhz and 5Ghz to allow a device to choose or even combine them. Now, there's also a drawback because if you want a device to connect to a specific device with an SSID, you can't choose it since the SSIDs are all the same. So sometimes you want to purposely have different SSIDs.

Hope this helps!
 
Somehow ... my formally separate threads have all become joined into 1 thread. How did that happen????
So forum systems have moderators that have a 'merge thread' feature that will take all the posts of a particular thread and merge them with another. This is useful when the topic of two threads are closely enough related that they make sense as one topic. :)
 

robert600

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Glad you're trying to understand--that's how I started and I can do what you want in my sleep now after 30 years of this stuff. :D

So to understand IP addresses at a professional level, read this--it's literally what I had to learn in college:
https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/support/docs/ip/routing-information-protocol-rip/13788-3.html
Same thing, different approach to the subject (as a teacher you know how this sometimes helps):
https://computer.howstuffworks.com/internet/basics/what-is-an-ip-address.htm

The reason you changed the IP address is simple--can't have 2x same IP addresses on one network. For fun, you can have 2x same ones and see the resulting chaos. :)

Same reason for disabling the DHCP server--can't have 2x on the same network. Again, for fun, you can set up 2x and see the resulting chaos.

The wifi name is technically called the SSID and having the same SSID with the same password allows devices to move from one wifi to another by just reconnecting to what they think is the same access point. This is why it is also useful to have the same SSID on 2.4Mhz and 5Ghz to allow a device to choose or even combine them. Now, there's also a drawback because if you want a device to connect to a specific device with an SSID, you can't choose it since the SSIDs are all the same. So sometimes you want to purposely have different SSIDs.

Hope this helps!
That's awesome .... thanks so much! I'll take you word for it about the resulting chaos. I have enough in my life without inviting more in! lol
 
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I could use some advice in regards to the layout and the physically installing of a wired LAN system. One concept that’ll be a major factor in this is what I’ll refer to as the ‘Wife Factor’: very simply … none of the Ethernet wire can be visible (except of course at the very end of each cable where I can have a foot or 2 of wire poking out of the wall ready to be attached to a device).

Ok … where I’m at now … I’m in a 2 story ranch type style house. Ethernet wise … everything is currently in the basement … in what I’ll refer to as my ‘man cave’. By previous agreement … very happy to say that the wife factor does not apply here. An exception to this is I do have 1 ethernet cable running upstairs to service what I’m using as an office. Recent covid events have forced me into on-line teaching using TEAMS etc. and wifi was not able to keep up … that’s what started this whole little project … anyway since this wire allows me to have an income I’ve been granted limited-time immunity (till the end of the school year) from the ‘wife factor … for this one wire only.

In the cave … I have a primary router connected to a secondary router (very recently configured to behave just the way I want). This gives me 6 wired LAN ports … one of these is servicing the office upstairs … so 5 free to play with. I can connect laptops, uhd blueray players etc. to any of these ports and get pretty decent file transfer rates (600 Mbps or so). So … now I can go ahead and set up a PLEX server based movie etc. system (earlier attempts via wifi failed miserably at this) … something I’ve been thinking about for a while now … so that’s great!

The plan of course is to extend the wired LAN to the 2nd floor. Here the wife factor comes very much into play and should under no circumstances be underestimated lol. And here is where I could use some advice. It’s only been in the last week or so that I’ve any experience or knowledge about routers, networking etc. so if some of my terms or thinking are muddled or whatever … cut me a bit of slack but definitely point out to me where I’m wrong.

Ok on the planning layout end of 2nd floor extending … I see 2 ways of proceeding:

1/ kind of a ‘brute force’ approach … simply attach an 8 or 12 port switch to the primary router and run separate wires to every devise location. This is ok but … it means running about 7 or 8 wires from the cave up to the 2nd floor … because of where there is a good place to accomplish that (utility, furnace room with no ceiling) means running these wires about I/2 the length of the house in the basement … feathering the wires up to the 2nd floor and then running back through various lengths of the house (some would have to come back the entire length of the house). Doable for sure (and I do have a big ass spool of wire to play with) but kinda … clunky.

2/ use a switch in the cave but just take 1 wire from it (or from the primary router) … run it same way mentioned above and … at the 2nd floor level … attach it to a 2nd switch (there is a quite centrally located closet that would be a good location for this switch and … since it’s my closet would be one the very few spots immune to the ‘wife factor’. All second floor devices (including the 2nd router?) could be connected to this switch with relatively short lengths of cable. I’m not sure though … would introducing this switch to switch connection have an adverse effect on file transfer speed?

Any thoughts on these 2 methods would be much appreciated. Or … there may an entirely other, better way to layout everything?

Ok … thinking of the runs of wire:

As mentioned … no ‘wife factor’ worries in the cave … I want it neat and tidy and out of the way of course but invisible … I’m not too worried about that. I see no problems with the cave cables. The 2nd floor cables however are very much subject to the ‘wife factor’ … that’s her domain and she guards it ruthlessly. I do however have an excellent ‘window of opportunity’ approaching. In the late spring, my wife wants to some remodeling, redecorating, painting etc. and one of the things she wants (music to my ears) is … those wall to ceiling corner crown moldings. They don’t actually go right into the corner … glue or nail one edge to the wall … the other edge to the ceiling and you have a nice little cavity at the wall/ceiling corner for the Ethernet cable … up above all the door frames … perfect I reckon. All the interior walls are standard 2X4 with ½ inch drywall on each side. To get through a wall to another room at that height would mean drilling through the top plate …so 3 ½ of wood … a speed bore bit or something would handle that ok … right? Since I’m running cable only (no connector) … ¼ or 5/16 inch would probably be plenty?

Another few things I can’t quite figure is … ok, I’ve got my cable at the right spot at the top of the wall. Now I want to come down into the hollow cavity of the wall to the right vertical height. How would I get a hole from the side of the top plate down into the wall cavity … I mean a drill wouldn’t work because you couldn’t get the right angle on it without hitting the ceiling with the back of the drill? Even banging away with a chisel would be problematic. Can anyone give me a suggestion here? I’d like to avoid damaging the drywall below where the crown molding would cover if possible. Also … thinking of the wall where the cable is at the right height to be plugged to devices … there seem to be wall plates with female sockets built into them … there’s also wall plates with a little round hole in them for the wire to come through … then you crimp a standard connector on the wire … which of those methods would be best? I guess … thinking of the ‘wife factor’ the wall plates with the built in female connectors would be the tidiest.
Okay, as far as the wiring. If your goal is to have 1Gbps speeds everywhere, then running cables is your best long term solution. However, if you don't need 1Gbps everywhere, there are other easier solutions, primarily powerline adapters and moca adapters.

Powerlines are dead simple to use--plug into wall, plug ethernet into powerline--done. Their drawback is speed, where they will at best break the 100Mbps mark--great for streaming (teams, etc), but not for file transfers.

Moca is almost as dead simple as powerlines, but use coax cables instead. But there's a catch and a benefit--the catch is that your cable wiring needs to be a certain way (and you can fix this if it isn't), and the benefit is 1Gbps speed--that's right--full gigabit.

Generally powerlines are the easiest to implement but moca's small investment in checking the wiring pays off with 10x the performance.

Okay, so now onto wiring things. The disadvantage of having a single run to the basement where the man cave and servers are is that you only have a 1Gbps link between the 2nd floor and the basement. And this generally isn't a problem unless 2x things from the 2nd floor can normally hit 600Mbps when connecting to the basement individually try to connect at the same time. Now, you've got 2x devices trying to get 600Mbps of bandwidth through a 1Gbps (1000Mbps) link. Get it? Like having 2x toilets on the 2nd floor flush at the same time and you only have enough sewer pipe for one at a time...actually eww that's a bad mental picture, but it does immediately reveal what happens--you get things backing up on you.

As far as terminating the wiring (that's the technical for the wall jacks/ends), you will want to use what are known as 'keystones'. These will create a jack on the end of a cable. And then these keystones typically fit into plates that accept them. Keep in mind every manufacturer makes different keystones and plates and some will work together and some will not.

So one thing for sure--if you're going to run cables and you're going to have nice wall jacks--you can put up to 6x cables in one wall plate, so run more than one run to places you think you may have a wire that does not work or may need a second jack. We did this at my parent's house in 1995--best decision ever since people that wire this stuff for a living still don't know how to properly terminate ethernet, even 25 years later, and we had at least one run work.

As far as how do you get the jacks in the wall--that's the really tough part. If you really, really want a wall jack like a power outlet, you will need to open a hole in your wall and then go backwards up the wall with what is known as a 'fishing line', which is really a stiff metal wire on a reel or fibreglass rods that you can attach a cable to and then push to where you want it to be. Honestly, this is where you are better off with wireless as you can easily hide the wiring for a ceiling mount access point very easily.

I'm sure I missed answering some of your questions so post back. :)
 

robert600

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Totally awesome answer ... I understood every single word of it! I'll need a bit of time to mull over the powerline/coax/ethernet cable choice. One very quick question ... thinking of the "only have a 1Gbps link between the 2nd floor and the basement " potential bottleneck ... if 2 cables were run from the cave switch to the 2nd floor switch... would that eliminate the bottleneck or at least reduce it? Or do switches have only one input jack and then all the LAN ports in the switch run off of that (thus making a double feed impossible)? I've never actually seen one ...I'll google and find a pic of it's connectors and then I'll have a clearer picture of what's up with them. I guess what I'm asking is ...does the ethernet feed to the switch go into a special port or ... does it just go into any of the many LAN ports of the switch?
 
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Yay! No special port on switches when they're unmanaged switches (aka 'dumb' switches), but that's the problem because two or more connections will create a 'packet storm' and shut down your entire lan:
https://computer.howstuffworks.com/lan-switch13.htm

Now, a managed switch can use something called 'Link Aggregation' (LAG) between two managed switches to aggregate the total bandwidth available, but it doesn't work like a single pipe of the same bandwidth. In plumbing terms, just because you have 2x 1" pipes, it's not like you have a single 2" pipe even though they can move the same amount of water.

But instead you can do smart thing with how you design your network. If you know for example a NAS unit in the basement is what will get hit with this traffic, you can use a second run to connect the NAS directly to the switch on the 2nd floor. This way it has its own dedicated 1Gbps link to the network versus sharing the one that links the basement to the 2nd floor.
 

robert600

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Yay! No special port on switches when they're unmanaged switches (aka 'dumb' switches), but that's the problem because two or more connections will create a 'packet storm' and shut down your entire lan:
https://computer.howstuffworks.com/lan-switch13.htm

Now, a managed switch can use something called 'Link Aggregation' (LAG) between two managed switches to aggregate the total bandwidth available, but it doesn't work like a single pipe of the same bandwidth. In plumbing terms, just because you have 2x 1" pipes, it's not like you have a single 2" pipe even though they can move the same amount of water.

But instead you can do smart thing with how you design your network. If you know for example a NAS unit in the basement is what will get hit with this traffic, you can use a second run to connect the NAS directly to the switch on the 2nd floor. This way it has its own dedicated 1Gbps link to the network versus sharing the one that links the basement to the 2nd floor.
I like the way you explain things! Excellent!

"But instead you can do smart thing with how you design your network. If you know for example a NAS unit in the basement is what will get hit with this traffic."

This is exactly what I'm working towards (in baby steps)!!! So ... 2 wires from the cave to the 2nd floor switch ... maybe a 3rd in case I ever run into problems with either of the 2 I'll be using ... I wouldn't even have to crimp connectors on the end of this 3rd 'backup' wire ... just having the wire in place with a few extra feet on each end would be like 'emergency money in the bank' should anything come up.

Thinking of the 'Wife Factor' in all of this I received some very good news indeed. She is going to go visit her mother (assuming the covid restrictions lift by then) for a week to 10 days when I start her planned mini renovations. That'll save me endless discussions about 'why are you running wires here, there and everywhere' and let me get on with things with no distractions. If she comes back to the installed crown mouldings and a bunch of other stuff she wants me to do ... as long as there's no wires visable all will be good. I'm sure she'll be skype calling in the evenings for updates but ... a little tape on both front and back cameras on my phone for a few days ... and a 'sorry, I can't seem to get the video working on this lousy phone' will take care of that. lol
 
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robert600

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2 cables....from what?

If possible, draw all this out on paper, as a sanity check.
Even better if you can draw it in software and show us.
Yes ... I hear you about the 'sanity check' ... I need that! Plus ... just because I get to the point where I know what I want to do (in my head). That doesn't mean I'm going to remember everything a few months from now when I actually have the 'window of opportunity' to do it. I can pretty much guaranty that I'll have forgotten a few things. I've only got 1 good shot at this installation and I want it to be 'in the gold' so to speak. A self written 'step by step' installation guide will be essential and save me a lot of time when I'm actually installing. I'm feeling like I'm getting very close to the point where I'll be able to generate a good initial installation sketch. Then it'll be 'Corel Draw' time. I'll definitely be posting that ... fine tuning it a bit based on suggestions/feedback ... write up my 'installation guide for dummies' and be all set for the actual installation in the late spring.
 
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